Fair Observer

How the Legal Landscape Is Changing for War Crimes

War crimes, genocide, torture, forced disappearances, crimes against humanity and other serious violations of international law have been characteristic of conflicts in the Arab world since even before they were codified in law. These crimes still occur in many Arab...

The War on Terror Was Never Turkey’s Fight

Do you know where you were on August 14, 2001? Perhaps not, since it isn't a defining day in world history in quite the same way as September 11, 2001, or 9/11, as it’s become known. Yet in the Turkish political landscape, August 14, 2001, can now be seen as something of a watershed moment. It was on this day that the Justice and Development Party (AKP) was founded. One...

Fair Observer

Can the Taliban Guarantee Security for Afghanistan’s Neighbors?

The Taliban's second takeover since 1996 is taking place in a regional context that poses challenges for the regime but also opens up new opportunities. Twenty-five years ago, the Taliban took over a country largely destroyed by civil war; today, they find a reasonably functioning state. At that time, the Taliban regime was recognized internationally by only three states: Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan. Iran, Russia and...

Fair Observer

Turkey Must Be Held Accountable for Its Abuse of Syria’s Yazidis

An August report by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on the Turkish occupation of northern Syria did not mince words, testifying that there has been a dramatic increase in killings, kidnappings, unlawful transfers of people and seizures of land and properties by the Turkish military and its local Syrian allies. Yet while all segments of northern Syrian society are suffering under Turkish occupation, it is the Yazidis who are...

Fair Observer

No Clear Vision to End Violence in Afghanistan

Afghanistan has been engulfed in bloodshed and confusion for decades. The deal between the United States and the Taliban signed on February 29 in Doha, Qatar, has added more tension to the conflict by creating competition among anti-government militants. Groups such as the Islamic State Khorasan (ISK) compete with the Taliban for political success and influence by perpetrating more violence. At the same time, they look to each other’s success as...

Fair Observer

For Libya, Peace Remains Unlikely

A recent ceasefire agreement and ongoing political reconciliation negotiations between Libya’s warring factions have significantly de-escalated tensions. A flurry of diplomatic engagement, with significant international support, has raised hopes that the Libyan conflict is about to enter a new stage, namely one that involves less fighting and more talking. Members of the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) and the Government of National Accord (GNA) met in September in Hurghada, Egypt,...

Fair Observer

How the US Can Win Back Clout in Syria

The humanitarian crisis in northeastern Syria is well documented. Nonetheless, despite the devastation that has occurred and the likely peril that is soon to come, pleas from aid groups, journalists and refugees have not been enough to move policymakers to take action. One reason for this is that because the underlying causes of this crisis are political, the solution must be too. Washington could seize considerable political influence in Syria...

Fair Observer

Is Assad Gearing Up for a Final Push in Syria?

Ceasefires in Syria come and go, and so do the meetings between the outside players who hold it in their hands to determine if an end to the country’s 9-year civil war is in sight. The most recent meeting in Ankara between Turkish and Russian military officers was intended to discuss issues at a “technical level” in both the Syrian and Libyan theaters of war. Not much was achieved, with Turkey’s Foreign...

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